Apple loses $500m patent case over iMessage and FaceTime features

Apple has lost the latest round of a patent dispute over secure messaging features in its apps that could see the company forced to pay $502m (£354m) in the another twist in an eight year legal battle.

A court in the US ruled the Cupertino giant had infringed four patents for secure messaging in its iMessage, FaceTime and VPN on Demand apps belonging to technology firm VirnetX.

Last year Apple was ordered to pay $440m in damages to VirnetX, but Apple has repeatedly appealed the rulings. VirnetX, founded by former engineers who developed security technology for the US government, owns 80 patents relating to secure messaging. Since 2010 it has been involved in legal battles with Apple over its…

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